Knowledge-Enriched Distributional Model Inversion Attacks

Si Chen, Mostafa Kahla, Ruoxi Jia, Guo-Jun Qi; Proceedings of the IEEE/CVF International Conference on Computer Vision (ICCV), 2021, pp. 16178-16187


Model inversion (MI) attacks are aimed at reconstructing training data from model parameters. Such attacks have triggered increasing concerns about privacy, especially given the growing number of online model repositories. However, existing MI attacks against deep neural networks (DNNs) have a large room for performance improvement. We present a novel inversion-specific GAN that can better distill knowledge useful for performing attacks on private models from public data. In particular, we train the discriminator to differentiate not only the real and fake samples but the soft-labels provided by the target model. Moreover, unlike previous work that directly searches for a single data point to represent a target class, we propose to model a private data distribution for each target class. Our experiments show that the combination of these techniques can significantly boost the success rate of the state-of-the-art MI attacks by 150%, and generalize better to a variety of datasets and models. Our code is available at

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@InProceedings{Chen_2021_ICCV, author = {Chen, Si and Kahla, Mostafa and Jia, Ruoxi and Qi, Guo-Jun}, title = {Knowledge-Enriched Distributional Model Inversion Attacks}, booktitle = {Proceedings of the IEEE/CVF International Conference on Computer Vision (ICCV)}, month = {October}, year = {2021}, pages = {16178-16187} }